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Ruthless Mexican drug cartel recruiting in U.S.; Los Zetas looks to prisons, street gangs
Question of the Day
Los Zetas also has pushed its way into legal and illegal businesses by killing, kidnapping or extorting those in control, a scheme known as “plata o plomo,” Spanish for “money or lead.” According to U.S. law enforcement and intelligence reports, gang members use their massive supply of weapons and high-tech equipment to instill fear to take over businesses.
Seeking to grab a larger portion of the $25 billion cocaine, heroin and marijuana market in the United States, Los Zetas is estimated to have between 1,000 and 3,000 hard-core members and 10,000 loyalists across Mexico, Central America and the United States. Authorities said the gang has organized a sophisticated supply and distribution network through its established territories.
“The Zetas are quite diversified and they are good bookkeepers,” said Mr. Grayson, the College of William & Mary professor. “They will go where they can make money and will do what they have to do to make it happen.”
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